This Trucker's Wife

by Jennifer S
(Butler, Pa)

My Truck Driving Husband, doing what he does best! (yea that is me the pic on the dash board)

My Truck Driving Husband, doing what he does best! (yea that is me the pic on the dash board)

When my husband and I first married, I never could have imagined him wanting to be a truck driver. When he came to me and told me he wanted to drive truck I was floored. We had a beautiful marriage. One that most people would love to have. Loving, open, giving, romantic, and most of all best friends.

I thought it would be just a "short term" situation. The economy where we live is horrid. the best paying jobs that are available where less than 10.00 an hour. With the rising cost of living, and the low pay we had been drowning for years.

Despite my hesitation, I looked around at the truck driving schools, and found one that we could get him into.

He started school, and I watched him getting excited about something for the first time in our marriage. Not walking with his head hung, and his eyes showing the signs of defeat that he felt for so long. I shuddered and only listened half-heartedly as he spoke of his training and his plans for the future.

The day neared, and he graduated. Next came the announcement and the company he was going to work for. It was long haul, and I had to be away from him for 3 months, no promise of getting home in the mean time (during his training period).

I remember the night before he left, as if it was yesterday. I laid in the tub crying, realizing that this was it. I was going to be faced with being a "single wife." I cried, and begged him to not go. I did not think I had the fortitude to go on with the day-to-day activities that it would take to be a "Drivers wife."

He went, and mean while I received a crash course in "single-wifehood". It was difficult, dealing with 4 children, bills, problems, all the "day to day" activities fell on me. It was not long before he found that the "long haul" was not for him.

He came home, and I was relieved, again believing it was "out of his system" and he and I would continue where we left off.

With in a week, he took a job with a local regional company--again my fears started coming back, Would I lose him to some local tramp at a truck stop--the fear that I think most wives have. Or to a horrid accident due to driving while fatigued.

So many of the "stories" that you hear about truck drivers flashed through my mind..the lot lizards, the lonely drivers looking to fill voids. Was I one of the slim amount of women who could handle having this type of marriage-- I was not sure.

It was tough- and in some ways it still is. The jump start into understanding what my husband was doing came after his 60 day training period, when he could then take passengers. I got to go with him approximately 2 weeks a month.

My insight, and appreciation for what he did for a living, finally began to surface. He was a "flat bedder". It was the middle of winter when I went with him. The things I saw both scared me, and gave me a great deal of respect for drivers.

My very first trip was in February, we were talking steel to Buffalo New York, and the snow began to fall. I crawled in the sleeper and fell asleep quickly, at that time it was just flurrying.

When I woke up, I started to crawl upfront to spend some time with him. It was about 4am. I pulled the curtain to walk up front when I looked out the window, I felt my skin crawl. The snow was coming down so hard that you truly could not see the road. In what seemed like a distance (but was likely only 10 feet) you could barely make out the glow of the red taillights from the truck in front of us. You could see nothing of the road that was actually a fairly large interstate. There were no "sides" of the road to be seen other than what the drivers where calling cat-of-nine tails--those being the stick reflectors on the side of the road. That was how these men where judging where the road was. Rough for sure.

In that same trip, we ended up going to Philly. I again experienced a life changing situation. While going around Philly, we saw the back of a truck that had literally been ripped off, and a body laying on the side of the road. In this situation, a man (sleepy) did not see the box truck that was stopped along the interstate--he smashed into the truck, taking of at least 1/2 of the box truck, sending a long piece of the box trucks supporting metal into the windshield piercing the man in the chest.

Good news, No one was fatally injured. However, what it did was make me realize the dangers my husband faced, and the job that he did.

It was not long until I started thinking about everything I owned. All transported by---- you got it---trucks. Each item that you are looking at, your coffee cup--your coffee---your monitor, your keyboard, your desk. All have been carried to and from by way of Trucks. It is our men--and women that are responsible for what you sleep on, what you wear, what you eat, and what you drink.

I did a lot of growing up in that time. I looked at a beautiful marriage, and decided YES, I can be a truckers wife. A loving one. One that understands---the only "female" he is going to have is the Big White woman with the screaming turbo's, and 18 wheels. It is not easy, I miss him terribly when he is not home.

I understand--and have experienced the first had worry, insecurities, and unknowings. It is not easy--it is difficult. But if you BELIEVE in your man (or woman) and understand--there is very VERY little time for "socializing" outside of a little bs on the radio, or a simple hello in a truck stop to a cute waitress (if there are any to be seen.)

Granted, there are those truckers out there that will screw around on their wives, and lot lizards looking to make money--but it is ultimately your JOB as a truckers wife to give him all he needs and more if you want HIM to come home to YOU.

If your bitchy, harping, and non-understanding, that lot lizard will look better and better to him. Give him a reason to come home. A loving wife, a clean house, a hot tub, and a great meal.

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Nov 05, 2012
Thank You NEW
by: Tina

It's nice to know that I am not alone. I miss my soul mate so much. If he can get steady well paying runs I would quit my job to go on the road with him. I have such a new found respect for what these men do.

Apr 12, 2011
THANK YOU!
by: Juls

I hear you when you say...look around everything we have is brought to us by truck. I am so proud of my trucker!

I find myself being so much more aware of trucks on the road, my heart goes out to them and there family.

I make sure my trucker comes home to a peaceful place with a great meal and knows he is loved. :)

Mar 26, 2010
So i'm not crazy after all!
by: Anna in the north

My hubby has been a trucker for almost 4 years now. For a while long distance hauling, and that was hard. He came home every so often, slept a few hours and was gone before we could even talk, but he was in training.

I knew the road well where he drove and its a rough road, sharp corners, blind areas, and when it snows.... well, yeah, it's blinding.

Before he became a trucker, i didn't have much appreciation for those big diesels on the road. Now I find myself horrified at the habits of the smaller vehicles and I pray every day that those are the ones who are going to be more careful.

Heard of many women who have lost their men to some freak accident on the highway. That hit home the most when i got a call one day when my own sweetheart hit the ditch, blinding snow and all, hooked a sharp dip on the side of the road and down she went.

My world stood still until I held him again. So my heart goes out to you girl for the trip you took with your man, and i totally agree with giving the man what he needs at home.

Enjoy every minute you got with them when they're there... okay *the occasional argument can be made up :) *

Have yourself a great weekend!

Jan 22, 2009
Thanks Manda
by: Jennifer Schnittker

Thank you so much for your comment.

I am going to email Crazy, and see what we can do to come up with some idea's for a "support group."

It seems more and more are checking in. It is wonderful to meet people that are going through--and understand exactly what it is, that we are going through.

Look for updates

Jen

Dec 23, 2008
truckerdrivers wife
by: Manda

hi Jennifer,
I really enjoyed your story.My husband has been a truck driver for the last 5yrs. and I'm very proud of my hubby and understand we're your coming from I cried for almost two weeks off and on when he first left just for orientation.

We have three children 13,11,10 and I couldn't get past how we'd make it without him. My Husband had always been the life of the party {to say the least} around our home, the thought of him not being home for days at a time drove me crazy.

I too have gotten use to it ,but all the same it's still can be hard more so for our oldest son but they know daddy is doing what he has to pay the bills and keep food on the table, plus he enjoys it all except from being away from the kids and me.

There are so many good husbands out there just trying to make a honest living. I believe it can be just as hard if not harder on the trucker driver himself leaving his family forever how long he/she may be gone.

I just always pray for his safe return every time he walks out door and make sure I tell him how much I love him.It's hard no doubt having a husband as a truck driver, but for all that they do I'm very grateful.

So to each Truck Driver and his wife {husband} may you too have a Happy Holiday and a safe return each and every time,


Manda

Oct 16, 2008
Contributing to the site
by: The Crazy Trucker

Hi Jennifer,

I just read comment about contributing. I have some ideas to run across you ladies, I will try to finish up early tonite and get back with you. There are definitely somethings that could be done make you guys input more visible.

Yall just have to bear with me for a second (Don't forget I am still driving LOL)

I may get done early today. (Early is 6 o'clock) Got done early yesterday but I had to find out where the debate was showing.

Talk to yous guys later
Hervy

Oct 15, 2008
Its Julie again
by: Anonymous

I just want to say that I think this web site is amazing and I am so glad I can be part of these stories on here, I am very proud to be a truckers wife and a lot of women or men do have a hard time dealing with their spouse being or becoming a truck driver. Even though my husband has been doing this for many many years I still miss him and worry about him badly. If there is any women or men out there that need to talk about there partner becoming or being a driver and would like to talk visit me here .........but hang in there and being a truck drivers spouse really does work out.......hope to talk to any of you soon.......thanks JULIE

Oct 15, 2008
Truckers Wives Chat room & more!!
by: Jennifer Schnittker

That would be awesome, for now We'll meet at the trucker wives forums It would be nice though--I know I replied to another woman who's husband was just considering it. But even if we could do something (Julie and I) to man your "wives" room would be awesome, a chat room is only good while both parties are there ;)


Anyway, I do like your site. It is very informative, the only information I did not find on here is "average daily cost" to drivers. I did find it on the IRS page. That being Jan-Sept, you are allowed to claim 41.00 a day, and Oct-Dec 52.00 a day. This year you are allowed to claim 80% of that on taxes. (this of course is just the allowance for meals) That does not take into consideration- Tolls (which some companies have passes for toll roads-others reimburse--yet others refuse to allow you to use them, so if you do take them, it is out of your pocket). Showers, Laundry ect. that you men/women need to do while on the road.

I have spent killer hours investigating everything from how a driver can fight companies that do not allow you your 10 hours down time,mostly by actually calling and talking to FMCA, how your logs work. For example (I know you already know this Crazy- but your "birth time" is not to be split. But most companies will try to push more out of you.Trying to get you in your down time waiting to actually be loaded, to say you were sleeping.) Anyway, I am such a pro-active person in anything that my husband does. My family for that matter- in 10 months I have become a truck driver advocate. Hey when I stand behind my man, it is NOT just because he is bringin' home the bacon so to speak. You have a hard job, and one that we all depend on greatly--although we never give a thought to it.

Sorry about that rampage, anyway lol. I being a "single wife" am online all the time, just as men get lonely on the road, so do we at home. If you can think of something that I can do to help you with your site, I would love to do so. I have told Keith about it, and cannot wait to introduce him to it.

Jennifer

Oct 15, 2008
Welcome Trucker's Wives!
by: The Crazy Trucker

Hello ladies,

well anonymous took the words out of my mouth!

WOW!

Well put entry and much appreciated. I know both of your husbands should be very happy with the choice they made in you ladies.

Julie you were the first to write on here at a trucker's wife and your writing is what got me off my but to do the trucker's wife page when I did but I forgot to transfer your writing to this page.

I will do that as soon as I finish.

Jennifer (LOL) you are not lost, this is just a considerably new page on the site and you 2 have the only entries right now.

I am glad to have you ladies as visitors and hope you will come back often. I think a lot of new trucker's wives can definitely benefit from your wisdom and understanding about relationships and growth specifically in dealing with being as I've seen called a "Single-Wife".

I will be doing something real soon about facilitating better communication between you all.

How about a chat-room?

Oct 14, 2008
I totally agree
by: Anonymous

I totally understand where you are coming from....my husband is also a trucker and has been gone pretty much all of our marriage and we to have 5 kids. And it is sometimes hard to deal with the day to day activities. And I do honestly agree with you about giving him a clean house warm meal and a great attitude at home.

I to have written a story on here. It is title..I am not a driver, but I am a drivers wife, if you would like to read it. Well I will go for now....tell your driver to be careful out there and you keep your head up high....it is amazing to be a TRUCKERS WIFE.........Julie

Oct 14, 2008
Wow!!!!!!!!!!
by: Anonymous

After being on the road for almost 30 years and still married to the same woman, all I have to say is you are one wise woman, and a rare one in this day and age indeed.

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